Follow the Green City Streets
The City of Edmonds is one of, if not the, greenest city in Snohomish County both in the form of the programs and education it offers, as well as what can be found on its streets. We will start with the latter first.
Walking along the streets of Downtown Edmonds, one can’t help but notice the beautiful flowers and plants adorning every corner. If you look a little harder though, you will also notice that they can be found in planters in front each and every business,
Why … because Edmonds recognizes and applauds businesses who make the pledge to be a green business. That pledge involves the following objectives:
- To be an environmentally responsible business within the community
- To conserve energy, water, materials and other resources
- To develop and implement practices which minimize pollution and waste
- To strive for continuous improvement
The city doesn’t just stop at requesting a pledge, it provides tips and guidelines for its businesses to follow.
I for one appreciate the effort. Walking the streets of Edmonds is an experience, not just because of all the amazing local shops and restaurants found there, but because of the art murals, and all of the flowers and plants. More than once I have found myself admiring the flowers featured in front of businesses or city workers freshening up a corner planter.
The city’s work with businesses doesn’t just end at pledges though. In 2010, it also became the first city in the county to ban single use plastic checkout bags at all retail establishments (Mukilteo followed shortly after).
As an extension of that ban, the city has been a strong promoter of bringing your own reusable bags and reusing plastic and paper bags at home whenever possible.
On its streets you will find other signs of green promotion as well. There are the familiar green umbrellas which can be found and shared throughout the downtown area on rainy days. There are also numerous bike racks and, not just refuse receptacles, but recyclable receptacles for you to sort your refuse into responsibly.
Edmonds is doing a lot beyond its streets as well. In 2010, the city received certification from the National Wildlife Federation (NWF) as the 41st Community Wildlife Habitat City in the United States. This was thanks to the efforts of the Edmonds Wildlife Habitat Project which works to:
- Protect, preserve, and restore wildlife habitats
- Educate residents in conservation, sustainability, and biodiversity needs
- Enhance, restore, and expand wildlife corridors through homeowner initiatives and government cooperation
- Host coastal and park clean-up parties
You are probably guessing that there are more to Edmonds available wildlife habitats than just parks, and you would be right. The city offers several interpretive and environmental educational opportunities for exploring local wildlife. Those opportunities include:
- Visitor Station at the Edmonds Fishing Pier which allows visitors to not only learn about the animals and plants found on the city’s beaches, but see and touch marine life as well. Open weekends 12-5 Memorial Day to Labor Day.
- The Edmonds Underwater Park which offers divers the opportunity to explore a large area which includes features and trails developed just for them.
- Beaches along the waterfront which are all heavily protected as marine sanctuaries. No fishing, clamming, crabbing, or collection of shells, rocks, driftwood, or other marine life is allowed on them.
- Edmonds Marsh is the first stop on Audubon Washington’s Great Washington State Birding Trail – Cascade Loop. The Marsh hosts up to 90 species of birds during the course of the year (the kid and I will be checking this one out for sure).
With so many steps being taken to keep the city green and a home to native plants and wildlife, Edmonds is truly an inspiration to other cities in the area, particularly those directly on the sound. It is a testament to what can be accomplished when a city’s government, its businesses, and its citizens set their minds to making a difference and work together to make it happen.
Take it from someone who explores this county A LOT, you have to go pretty far and fall off the cell phone grid to find a better place to find native plant and wildlife in our county. I for one, can’t wait to explore it more this spring and summer.
Did you know that this article, as well as all of the others featured on our website are part of a monthly magazine. Our monthly magazine is available in both electronic and print form (yes, you read right, print!). As if that wasn’t awesome enough, each issue contains exclusive content that can’t be found on our website or social media accounts. So if you aren’t getting a copy each month you are missing out.
Single issues can be bought HERE and annual subscriptions, which include exclusive giveaways and discounts, can be signed up for HERE. Finally, a limited number of printed copies are available at The Chic Boatique, Artisans Mercantile, and Tried & True Boutique in Snohomish and Reclaimed Heart in Arlington, Vintage Company No. 7 in Bothell, Dahlia’s Vintage Marketplace on Camano Island, Rustic Redemption in Granite Falls, and Vintage & Rust in Monroe.